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Published on Apr 22, 2008
Mario Lanza (1921-1959)
'Thine Alone' (Herbert-Blossom). Recorded for the July 1, 1951, broadcast of "The Mario Lanza Show", with studio orchestra conducted by Ray Sinatra.
As it was only recently released on CD, I've just now become acquainted with Lanza's Coca-Cola show recording of Victor Herbert's lovely 'Thine Alone' (from his 1917 operetta "Eileen"). But it is by far the best of Lanza's three extant versions of the song- including the duet with Kathryn Grayson from the Hollywood Bowl- and has quickly become one of my all-time favorite Lanza performances. He is in absolutely PRISTINE voice, the singing is full of youthful ardor and enthusiasm, and the ascent to the climactic, final B-natural is nothing short of hair-raising.
Lanza's way with operetta is as effortless as with any popular song he recorded. The phrasing is utterly natural, instinctive, and unforced, yet full of nuance. And his obvious passion and sincerity convince the listener of the rightness of almost every musical gesture. Combined with that incredible voice, these elements make Lanza's legacy of song an enduring, ever-inviting musical treasure.